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Thread: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

  1. #1

    Default Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Hello,

    Thinking to plan a day trip to JianKou of the Great Wall,
    Yap, that the place a young couple got strike by lighting months back.
    But after doing some research, that seems to be the preferred spot for photography.

    Hoping to get some feedback on how difficult this route is.
    I intend to get a local guide to hike from JianKou to Mutianyu

    http://www.cnadventure.com/GreatWallHiking.htm


    Thanks

  2. #2
    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Hi Bro redwine.... you can google for the chinese language great wall forum where alot of locals discuss climbing various sections ofthe wall in detail.

    Or if you cannot read and write chinese, go to the english forum here..... still alot of info http://www.greatwallforum.com/forum/


    The 2 deaths that occured were tragic but could have been avoided..... key hint when hiking high on a hill/mountain - "Your mobile phone acts as a lightning conductor"

    I was up Jianjkou in June this year actually.... also done Simatai, Mutianyu, Shuiguan and Huanghuacheng sections of the wall over the years...... JIANKOU is the toughest bar none .... IMHO

    There are no bus services to Jiankou area that I know of.... I rented a private car for the whole day 400rmb (send you there, send you back to Beijing and wait all day for you) .... left Beijing at 3am ... got there around 4.30am and started climing at first light......... if you dont like tramping around in the dark u have to stay overnight on the wall to catch sunrise

    Its good that you are not going to Badaling section of the Great Wall.... too renovated and restored and the crowds are loud and bad



    Sections like Jiankou, Simatai, Jinshanlin , Gubeikou etc etc etc are MUCH better.... a whole lot tougher to climb as well.... but the rewards of spectacular views and little other visitors all day are worth it (Esp if you go on a weekday)

    This a snapshot of the Jiankou section .... no composition or anything... just a regular record shot.........as are the following Jiankou images






    Climb carefully..... the nickname of Jiankou section of Great Wall is "Wild Wall" ... it is VERY VERY poor condition with loose stones, bricks and sand all over the place.... no safety rails, no ladders , no humans in sight except the occassional villager selling drinks ..... its very easy to fall......10 to 30 feet from te top of the Wall to the ground.... you can get seriously hurt

    Getting TO this section from the foot of the heavily forested mountain alone is a 3+hrs climb.... up. Getting down is actually more difficult because by that time you will be totally wiped out and no legs left.... 4+hrs

    I recommend that you wear proper hiking shoes and a camera backpack.... shoulderbag sure die one.

    ON the wall..... it is in very bad condition but still so beautiful.... but dangerous.... many many parts have to climb with BOTH hands and feet and a few feet at a time

    Bring sufficient food (lunch ?) and water with you... there are NO kiosks at that section selling drinks or snacks

    We approached the section at a fish farming village (rear NZ rainbow trout) that is not too far from the Mutianyu section of the wall..... so from Beijing, have the driver head towards Mutianyu section of the wall until you get to a small town (Chang Ping I think) and then ask locals there how to get to Jiankou section of wall instead of Mutianyu

    Have dinner at the fish rearing village..... the rainbow trout bbq in spicy sauce is really good.... and should rest for a couple of hrs anyway after you get down... so might as well have dinner there.

    Below this is a VERY small section that is still walkable.... excuse my cigar...

    Last edited by ed9119; 6th September 2009 at 09:28 PM.

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    This pic is taken at base of the Wall .... but still ON TOP of the mountain..... many many stones and original construction materials for the Wall have fallen off.... just to give you an idea if you actually fall off the wall....what you will be landing on 10-30 feet below you

    Again sorry, excuse my cigar



    Look behind me.......... magnificent and dangerious .... many parts you will be climing UP

    And look at the stairs ..... there are none..... nature and time have turned these steps/stairs into literal piles of loose rubble



    One last advise....... DO NOT climb if its t raining..... heard that the 2 were struck and killed by lightning when one of them tried to use mobile phone on top of Wall on top of mountain to make a call...... he became a lightning rod because of that...... and its gruesome to think how the lightning zapped him through his phone through his head and .... you get the idea.
    Last edited by ed9119; 6th September 2009 at 09:32 PM.

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    I will be doing a 3 day 2 night hike (and shoot) in early November from Gubeikou to Jinshanlin to Simatai with overnight near or on the Wall before heading up to Jilin province.... am looking for at least 1 other travel companion with like-minded interest for this Great Wall hike

    PM me if keen ?

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    er bro, dont mind.... use Thread Tools to move this to Travel Photography section of the forum? its more appropriate and MUCH more useful there for people looking for help travelling to different places

    thanks !

  6. #6

    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Hey ed9119,

    Thanks for the comments

    I'm considering a full day hike either from JianKou to Mutianyu,
    or Jinshanling to Simatai.

    In your opinion,
    is the view of Jiankou worth all the effort (esp safety),
    compared to Jinshanling to Simatai ?
    Will i miss out a lot ?

    As i'm travelling with a female companion,
    some of the pic i see of Jiankou is pretty challenging
    For eg:
    http://www.chinaculturecenter.org/al...rid=3&total=16

    Sure, but my Thread Options doesnt have a move option, only Closed & Delete.


    Thanks

  7. #7

    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Quote Originally Posted by ed9119 View Post



    Wow, is this a 'must go thru' route to Mutianyu ?
    my legs getting soft

  8. #8
    Moderator ziploc's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Thread moved.


    Quote Originally Posted by ed9119 View Post
    This is you? WOW.

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    hansum or not ??? kekekeke

    OK a few more snapshots.....all shot around 10am-2pm hence the harsh lighting....

    IGNORE the Wall for a moment in this image below.... just look at how steep the terrain is just to get onto Jiankou Wall... I hear that there are a couple easier routes that is less risky ... you will need to research that yourself sorry... I dont have that kangtao he he

    Oh have a look at the mountains in the horizon for some clue on what the views are like .... early morning sunrise or sunset with a nice tele will yield gorgeous results ... clear winter mornings are like crazy with warm warm light hitting a snow laden Wall snaking through a sea of clouds below ....


    ok this one below.... distance between me and that little little fella nearest to me in a hat down below is about a 25-35+ + ft drop ... I was halfway up the 'stairs' ... just imagine a simple tumble down THIS


    will dig thru my HDD and see what else I can share....
    Last edited by ed9119; 6th September 2009 at 10:58 PM.

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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    When you see this Rock sign.... you are very near to BOTH Jiankou and Mutianyu... just look for signboards that say 'Fish Rearing Village' or 'Rainbow Trout Farm' etc etc or words to that effect in Chinese... otherwise ask the locals ... because from here onwards, you go onto village dirt roads...



    Below image..... this is what the situation looks like 20+km ahead and 20+ km behind of me... lunchtime already... notice the peace and the total lack of human life



    BUT all is not hardship on the Wall...... there are little pockets of walkable paths here and there with all sorts of bush and flowers sprouting out of the little niches between the rocks


  11. #11
    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Below image...We ran into a group of China Eastern staff es on their Annual team-building activity..... which makes sense .... because once you get up there.... you just want to scream out from the bottom of your heart " I MADE IT !!!!!" .... there is a very strong sense of combined and individual effort and achievement ... this group just got DOWN from that crazy descent in the background....



    After you get off the mountain.... have a sip of the ice cold mountain spring water sprouting out of all sorts of holes and mini-waterfalls .... really refreshing and I did not get stomach ache.... the water was so cold that the farms and restauraunts at bottom of mountain collected concrete pools of it to rear fish, irrigate crops, drink from, wash things and to keep crates and crates of ice cold beer and soft drinks

    Washing my face in ice spring water never felt so good

    OK, if you are lucky enough to start/end at the Fish/Trout rearing village, MUST try their BBQ Rainbow Trout..... deeeeelicccioussss.... and spicy like hell.



    Yes, by that time it will be around 4 - 5+ish

    Below image..... farm workers selecting our trout... these buggers (the trout) are HUGE at about 2kg a piece.... cost is about 50-70rmb including BBQ service

    Last edited by ed9119; 6th September 2009 at 10:55 PM.

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    Member LiuLangMao's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    I went to both of them on a day trip...not a hiking trip....
    took a bus from dong zhi meng to huai rou....

    if u are ok with reading chinese....can visits this site...I have write down how to use public transport + taxi to reach jian kou and mu tian yu...
    http://jmwindows.multiply.com/journal/item/102/102

  13. #13

    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Thanks guys for all the inputs

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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    JianKou ?
    is 箭扣长城 ?

    Photo taken at 箭扣长城 2007.09








    tungtong

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    I TRY to...Keep the lines of communication open, can U?
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    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Quote Originally Posted by tungtong View Post
    JianKou ?
    is 箭扣长城 ?

    Photo taken at 箭扣长城 2007.09



    tungtong

    .
    One fall...... end of holiday...... you could easily lose balance.... I tried this part too.... almost toppled over

    Advise: You will most likely use backpack.... even then if the backpack is too heavy with equiptment and drinks..... your centre of gravity shifts UP and OUTWARDS from your back.... very easy to lose balance and plunge into a horrific situation. Just take it VERY SLOW and Steady

  16. #16

    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Quote Originally Posted by ed9119 View Post
    One fall...... end of holiday...... you could easily lose balance.... I tried this part too.... almost toppled over

    Advise: You will most likely use backpack.... even then if the backpack is too heavy with equiptment and drinks..... your centre of gravity shifts UP and OUTWARDS from your back.... very easy to lose balance and plunge into a horrific situation. Just take it VERY SLOW and Steady
    Walau
    Got detour ?

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    Senior Member limwhow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Quote Originally Posted by redwine View Post
    ....
    As i'm travelling with a female companion,
    some of the pic i see of Jiankou is pretty challenging
    ...
    Of course there are many female companions that are way fitter than us male companions.
    But still, if I were to go, I would be in the same position as yourself. And I dare not even think of her falling 20ft down and getting hurt; or half way through so tired liao, cannot move on, and we are stuck neither here nor there...
    Challenging.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Quote Originally Posted by ed9119 View Post
    One fall...... end of holiday...... you could easily lose balance.... I tried this part too.... almost toppled over

    Advise: You will most likely use backpack.... even then if the backpack is too heavy with equiptment and drinks..... your centre of gravity shifts UP and OUTWARDS from your back.... very easy to lose balance and plunge into a horrific situation. Just take it VERY SLOW and Steady

    Do you have to go down the same way?

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    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Awesome pics. Looks super siong.

    I am planning to check out Shimatai actually. I also heard from a friend that the dangerous section has been officially closed since 2002 after several deaths. I heard they actually built a guard post there to stop anyone from climbing that cliff.

  20. #20
    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone been to Great Wall - JianKou ?

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    Awesome pics. Looks super siong.

    I am planning to check out Shimatai actually. I also heard from a friend that the dangerous section has been officially closed since 2002 after several deaths. I heard they actually built a guard post there to stop anyone from climbing that cliff.
    Latest intel suggests that the entire route is walkable between Jinshanling- Simatai

    But there is a arial flying cable ride at the lake area which you zip down a cliff attached to a mere strap which sounds fun, takes less than 5 mins and saves you 45mins walk

    Simatai ha ha ha..... I still remember my most humiliating moments there to this day. When you get up there via cable car or the long walk you will have another 100+m uphill climb at 40-50 degrees gradient.... extremely siong.

    Half way up there..... an old village lady in her 60s offered help carrying my camera bag. I could not make it any more and surrendered my bag onto the ground to rest. She picked up the 8-9kg pack and made off like a mountain goat up the rest of the way..... and even helped haul my sorry a** up the last part to get onto the wall..... I was extremely humbled.... its young people like us who should be helping old folks ..... not old folks helping us up mountains


    BEAUTIFUL GRAND views .... she just refused to let go of the camera bag the rest of the day and I still had problems with fitness walking that area.... it was so shameful that I had a 60+ year old woman as a porter. End of day all she wanted to do was make sure I bought some postcards ..... I plonked whatever rmb in my pocket into her hands in exchange for a couple of postcard books and a local book of really great Wall images over the 4 seasons .... i think about 180-200 rmb...... I did not even bargain.....she deserved that

    These villagers (mostly old women with nothing to do in the village) walk up that mountain EVERY DAY selling postcards, picture books and drinks ....really respect their fitness at this age
    Last edited by ed9119; 11th September 2009 at 11:51 PM.

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